Preparing for the return

Trip Start Mar 12, 2011
Trip End Dec 15, 2011

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Where I stayed

Flag of Russia  , Far East Russia,
Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Martin's melt down moments
WEll we've spent today organising our exit from Vladivostok and preparing car for shipment.Again no doubt Roger will provide the details.I guess now that our foot has literally come off the gas we are showing signs of wear and tear but there is still work to be done.
So today a word about Stanley.
I've always had an inclination toward the ordinary in motor cars,bikes etc.Its either a retreat from having a more exotic device and being compared to others of a similar type and value.I like to think its an attempt to preserve the common place.There are probably more vintage Bugattis now than were ever made originally and other cars and bikes of similar reputation survive in great numbers.But the common cars are regarded as being so numerous in numbers that they are bound to survive.Not so.
Anyway Stanley is a very rare car in that I believe it to be the only surviving pre-war Series 111 Morris 25 (got an overhead valve engine for those that may not know).Its a large car designed for chauffeur work and certainly the territory for the upper middle classes of the late 30s.Most of them were apparently converted for ambulances during the great unrest.
But its structure certainly fits the bill for this type of work.Its by no means a sports vehicle but I think I've got enough power out of its 3.5 litre engine and four speed gearbox (originally 3) to deal with a bit of ooommff when required.The car has taken an enormous pounding these lat 7+ weeks and I reckon the front suspension is completely shot (see UB report).The body is shaken and showing extreme signs of distress but the engine,whilst needing a good service,sounds as strong as ever and I'm hopeful that the transmission has stood up.It has been a brilliant car and I pay tribute again to all those who have contributed to its ability to perform the task.I mentioned those people when I first contributed to the blogs.I pray I did not leave anybody out.To these I must add the wonderful folk in Baku,each of whom I will email when I get sorted back home.
So we reckon we have a couple of days more here in Vlad before we fly home.
Eddie Stobart,Elizabeth Taylor and Osama Bin Laden have left us,Japan has suffered an awful disaster and Prince William has got married.If only Lord Lucan would show up....

Well, having spent the last 8 weks travelling (mainly ) every day, w eare now holed up in Vlad and sorting ot the paperwork. Remeber, the jobs not done til the paperwork is finished. Went to the shipping agent and she went through all the things that had to be done, the costs that had to be  paid. That took most of the morning. Spet some time sorting the car out, and then after lunch we went to the bank to draw some money. Of course, we cannot draw more than 10000 roubles a day from an ATM,  so we had to go to a bank proper to get moeny over the counter. Eventually managed to find a bank that dealt with customers, albeit that it took us about an hour to get to see the person we needed to see, and then got charegd 4% for the priviledge. However, armed with the fees, we went back to the shippers and paid the money over. We havbe to meet them tomorrow early to get the car down to the docks and loaded into a container. Apparently then the papers get passed to Customs who pass it for shipment. We'll believe that when we see it. How can you put it in the container and seal it up before customs  have passed it? However that will all be sorted tomorrow.

If things go well, then we will fly home on Saturday. Friday is the start of another long weekend here and all Friday flights are booked to Moscow, for people celebrating the holiday. So we'll save quite a bit by staying the extra day.

And there it is. Car already packed away (the inside that is) and ready for a sea journey. We arent packed yet but there isnt much point at the moment.

The hotel matrketing guys came out while we were working on sorting the car and asked if we could allow them to take some photos. So we are going to be in the hotels publicity!!!

Mileage - in the car virtually nothing. Just turning it round for the photos. But walking, thats another question!
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Rosemary & Peter on

Well done boys - you've done good! Am sure you'll be able to dine out on this for some time to come! Have a safe journey home & hope to catch up with you Roger on your return (& ours as we're off to the States next week) All the best to you both R & P

Pat and Nigel on

We have so enjoyed your blogs and waited for the next episode with great anticipation. A bit like Radio 4's "The Archers. An Everyday Story of Country Folk!" but rather different country and folk.
What amazing experiences for you both. Safe journey home.
Pat and Nigel

Howard Sargent on

What an amazing achievement by both of you and Stanley. I now regard my weekly battles with the M1 and M25 as a picnic ! I shall miss your updates but look forward to meeting you both soon. Take care.

Emily on

I'm sure Stanley would be very pleased with his write-up!

Kurt Hendricks on

Absolutely superb job followed you most of the way when I had time and you certainly had your adventures - I am a bit jealous as I love adventures. Glad all of us in Baku could help you on your way!!

Simon Stephen on

Congratulations to you Roger, Martin and Stanley. What an achievement. I don't think that I will try to repeat your journey in my Morris Eight (SE tourer)! It has been facinating reading your journal and seeing your photographs. What an endurance test for you all.

Tony and Diana on

Congratulations to you both and Stanley. What an amazing adventure and achievement. We have so enjoyed reading your blogs which have brightened our days - thank you! Have a safe journey home. No doubt you will be looking forward to a bit of relaxation before planning your next exploits!!

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